Shades of Green

How many shades of green are there? It’s a question I ponder as I gaze in wonder at the earths recovery from winter here in the northland parts of USA.

Many many shades of green

We use the word “green” in all areas of life. Mentally, physically , socially and spiritually. Looking at our present world one could think we have a bunch of greenhorns spending huge greenbacks on a mostly green planet seeking greener days beside the still waters without a shepherd. OK, greatly mixed metaphors leading to a reference to the much quoted Pasalm 23 in the Bible.

I recently helped fight a fire and came back to see what survived and what didn’t. basically the dead stuff burned. The living plants and trees with a good root system, and some substance was singed, but survived well. Green is a sign of life!

Look at the little green tree. A survivor of the fire.

This is the kind of picture that my father would point out to us as kids along with all the life applications he could think of. “I hope you kids grow up to be like this little tree. The hard times only singe you instead of burn you up! You will meet people living with a stack of lies, it’s like trying to grow in a brush pile and someone some day is going to torch it.” Yes, dad was longer winded than that but you get the gist.

I sure want to be like that little tree. I want that kind of green. I want to be like the tree in Psalm1. Green also symbolizes immortality; eternal life verses ashes.

Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; for the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish. (Psalm 1)

A tree. Remembering dad, Knowing what it means to be a follower of Jesus

Gary

Published by Gary Fultz

Outdoors Man, Hunter, Fisherman, Guide, Writer / Author, Photographer, Public Speaker, Musician, Song Writer, Story Teller, Follower Of Jesus. Love God and family and total strangers

48 thoughts on “Shades of Green

  1. Great story and photos. It reminds me from my many years of being a tree climber that we learned that once the fire had passed and burned some of the larger trees out that it prompted something called release. That was when all the understory smaller trees had the opportunity to shoot up in a period of unprecedented growth!

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    1. Thanks Pete, There is quite a lesson in how much the sun affecting those little trees with growth and how much the Son affects our growth. Looking unto Jesus Hebrews 12:1-2

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      1. Nathan’s favorite color is green so all of his stuff is green (he’s also retired Army so tons of OD green!) and he says the same as you, “green is life.” I love trees, pictures of trees and lessons from trees, hence why I love this post! When we moved one of the first phone calls I made was to have trees planted (if you’re curious side: 4 giant green arborvitaes, 1 okame cherry, 2 white spruces; back: 2 serviceberries, 1 autumn blaze maple, 2 giant green arborvitae and 3 Serbian spruces). There is a biblical theology of trees that runs from Genesis to Revelation. Gary, I absolutely love your heart for Jesus, nature and the outdoors!

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    1. Nathans got it right on the green. Being you love trees (awesome combination of plantings!!), and scripture, I know you could come up with 10+ biblical ways the scripture uses trees in reference to illustration, analogy and just example…from roots and being grounded to the cross. I like to take pictures of trees that tell parts of those stories.

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    1. Thanks Jon, tht’s a great chapter to memorize.. It’s special to me as I have worked with trees and hay bales so I know what chaff is. We all should be like the tree and never like useless chaff

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    1. Thanks Alan. Yes, that little spruce in ashes represents a whole lot of life and spiritual principles. It would have been nice to have a before picture but those kinds of fire come like a thief, very unannounced and possibly deadly.

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  2. Great post Gary. There’s always a smile standing by once I come to your posting to read of your interesting and colorful messages, as well as receiving a loving lesson, blending the majesty of life around us of our loving Heavenly Father, His Word and your photograhy. Have a wonderfully blessed week. 🌳🍃🌿
    Susan

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    1. Thank you so much Susan. Your kind words make my day. I do get many photo opportunities for nature. It seems something is always happening around us. It helps to be attuned to it though.

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      1. You’re welcome Gary. I’m glad it made your day, because you continue to motivate me to get out and take pictures, and hopefully having a story or two along with it, to share with my grandchildren. I am ready! 😊

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    1. Thanks Alicia. There is so much to like about all that green. I am partial to the header picture with the morning sun shining right through the leaves. I took the shot from the dark side. there’s a lesson there I may use on screen when public speaking.

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  3. Your picture shows, in that one area, mostly devastation. Fire does not discriminate. Anything burnable will burn. Yet, the concept of going through the fire, being in the very midst of the fire, and not getting burned, invoking the Scripture, portends some form of protection or the presence of some different material impervious to burning in the usual sense. Not meaning, of course, that there is no burning at all for the few within such parameters. There is certainly at least a slight singe. There is some pain. There is fear and sometimes much fear, but greater faith. There are also all the usual elements associated with spiritually overcoming that helps one actually go through the fire without the usual burning that all else in the vicinity is subject to. In a sense it is the same with the Lord’s death and resurrection:

    “Go ahead, make My day.” “Do what you will. I will overcome it.” We are subjected to such in life and especially our spiritual lives, as spoken by your very wise Dad (a great teaching moment), and the key is to not try to avoid it or attempt to structure our lives in such a way that fire would never come. It will come. Fire will most certainly come. Rather, do all one can as per the Lord’s instructions, I will counsel, and it helps to do such consistently for many years. When then, the inevitable arrives, one will have done all one can to emerge on the other side still green and even greener. In this sense, as life goes on for the spiritual veteran, the shades of green in one’s life grow richer and brighter and more intense.

    Green is the Biblical color of LIFE. When God mixes a yellow sun with a blue sky He gets a green earth. Great Light and Grace produces Life. Even in the midst of surrounding destruction. There will be losses but such often are the things that must go anyway. Controlled burns in nature set off by lightning remove only what must be removed and then a short while later new growth and green explodes.

    Can a real Christian structure a life subject to the usual fire but greatly resistant to destruction? Again, better to work very hard removing inevitable combustibles. Appropriate a spiritual fire suit. Be there for others who may not be so well protected.

    Thank you, Gary, for living this out in a real event and telling us about it. One has to love such living examples and parabolic teaching moments. Like Father like Son.

    (“You see, all that you behold out there in this vast forest has been subjected to a relative infinite array of one fire after another, fires forever, going back eons, and the living landscape is still here just as green and healthy as ever.”)

    Maybe you can give us an update photo when that area goes green again.

    “When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, nor will the flame burn you.” [Isaiah 43:2]

    Blessings

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    1. I love your insightful in-depth comment RJ. I have chosen to write short blogs about one main point hoping that others would fill in insightful analogies and life applications they see, or even do their own insightful blog as a result.
      Thankyou for your addition. I have done 64 wilderness trips with groups (going on #65 in a few days) and I look for “Life Application” moments and visuals throughout the trip….learned from dad and refined over the years.

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    1. You might be willing to drive cross country to do a BWCAW tip into the wilderness for a few days. It’s wild country. canoe and portage back into remote areas inaccessible any other way. In 8 days I’m leading trip #65. Hoping to see at least 35 lakes and rivers and catch some great fish.

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      1. Sounds wonderful! My Chemotherapy over the next 6 months won’t allow it this year. But, there is always next year my brother!😊 I’ll be praying God gives me the strength and opportunity to do that with you one day!

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  4. Wonderful post! In Virginia, we have these Tulip Poplar trees. They can exceed 120 feet and there amidst variations in greenery, bloom these incredible yellow tulips. The ‘fruit’ of these trees comes in due season; you look up to see a sea of tulips, so high up, it is astounding. Our souls are fed from the stream of God’s Living Water…that is how we stay forever green. And like those Tulip Poplars, we bloom in due season…

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    1. Thanks Linda. Those poplar trees sound amazing. We do bloom in season even if it is a short season. There are so many applications one can make just from trees. Thanks for adding your good insights.

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  5. Thoroughly enjoyed your post, Gary. Thanks for stopping by JonahzSong so I could find you and be blessed by your thoughts.

    Quick story on forests burning. The Apaches burn the brush BEFORE fired season–Arizona “Indian Reservation.” The fire burns the dead and down and the brush. Lots of smoke. The heat seems to open up the ground surface, allows pine seedlings to start, helps protect from man-caused forest during the fires season. And this burning of the bush does no damage to the living. (I only know this from my days with the Forest Service, on the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest.)

    L-RD Bless, Keep, Shine upon you and yours always, granting y’all His Shalom Peace. . .

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    1. Thanks Wil. Someone was trying a control burn as it helps the forest a lot. They did it at the wrong time and it was too dry to control. We put it out by back firing a circle around it so only about 30 acres burned (kind of hot but it’s coming back very well.

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    1. Thanks Deb. Sometimes I see a direct and stark application to my life, right there in front of me. I had to go home, get my camera, go back and take that picture for my own reminder.

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  6. What a gutsy little tree! ❤ It would get along well with the bright pink flower I found springing up from a crack in the rock on the side of a mountain when I was out west with my sister. These things are God's reminders that hope is never lost. He will make life spring up wherever He wills it, even in the midst of our fires and droughts. .
    Good Scripture choice. 😉

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    1. Yes Ann, I am possibly going to make a small canvas print of that tree just to glance at now and then for the encouragement you just mentioned. There is always hope as long as we have “Living Water” flowing in us.

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  7. When we face disasters in life, it’s sometimes because we’re meant to change our course in life. To change from a small tree sheltered by the forest to a pioneer to resestablish the forest and be the leader.

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    1. What a great insight. A pretty special small tree with quite a bit of resilience I say. That should challenge us to the core in our hard times of loss, even though our natural reaction may be to crawl in a hole and pull it in after us.

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